Archives in Context: Teachable Topics from the CSU Japanese American Digitization Project

Loyalties: Activity 5

In December of 1944 before the war was over, the WRA announced that the incarceration would end and the camps would close within a year. There was much confusion and anxiety about the safety of people of Japanese ancestry. At Tule Lake 5,461 Nisei and Kibei renounced their citizenship thinking it would be safer for their families in Japan, whereas only 128 from all the other WRA camps renounced. The effort to restore citizenship took 22 years in U.S. courts. Read this written declaration given under oath of Tsugitada Kanamori providing extended background information to support cancelling his renunciation and reinstating his U.S. citizenship. It outlines the journey of one Japanese American family during WWII: 

Create a timeline of the events mentioned in the order they may have occurred. How many different places were he and his family incarcerated? How does he explain the changes in his view of loyalty to country? What political and social pressures can you identify that influenced this family’s journey? What were the reasons why he renounced his American citizenship?

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